And see what we've been up to this year!
View this email in your browser
SPRING NEWSLETTER                                                                           Volume 4, Issue 1
                                                                                                                            March 2018
In Memory of Professor Calestous Juma
A Letter from Julia Pettengill, AFPF Executive Director

Dear Friends,

This past December, the world lost a distinguished scholar and leader in international development, and AFPF lost a valued mentor and dear friend, Professor Calestous Juma. A powerful voice for Africa, Juma worked with tremendous enthusiasm to bring together people, science, technology, and policy to advance sustainable development.

Professor Juma was born and raised in Kenya in a remote village on Lake Victoria with 13 brothers and sisters. He worked as an elementary school teacher before becoming Africa’s first science and environment journalist at Kenya’s Daily Nation newspaper. He received a Masters in Science, Technology and Industrialization and a Doctorate in Science and Technology Policy from the Science Policy Research Unit at the University of Sussex.

In 1988, Professor Juma founded the African Centre for Technology Studies in Kenya, Africa’s first independent research institution merging development policy and technology. He later joined the Harvard Kennedy School of Government and was affiliated with the Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, the Center for International Development, and Mossavar-Rahmani Center for Business and Government. He served as a special advisor to the African Union, United Nations, and World Bank.

For AFPF, he believed in our endeavor to support community-initiated development programs in Africa by providing financial and strategic resources, and offered tremendous visibility. He graciously wrote for AFPF’s blog,
RAISED, detailing how higher education can be reimagined to become incubators for innovation in the developing world. He was a champion for rural women’s education, and his book The New Harvest outlines how innovative education models and technological advancements can maximize the agricultural sector and address issues of food security and climate change.

When I first became Executive Director in 2014, I reached out to Professor Juma to speak to the AFPF community at Boston University’s African Presidential Center. He agreed, and I was ecstatic, but when he asked me for a phone call, I became overwhelmingly nervous. What would I say to someone with the credentials and prestige of Calestous Juma? After hours of preparation and with extensive notes in the form of Post-Its all over my wall, I called his number. At the first sound of his warm voice, my nerves disappeared. He didn’t care about how sophisticated I sounded or how many statistics I knew. Instead, he wanted to hear about my personal story and he listened with great interest to my upbringing in Africa as the daughter of development workers. We identified that we both moved to the small town of Masvingo, Zimbabwe in 1983, and he said, “You are a true African, Julia. Do not ever forget that.” And I haven't forgotten those words since. 

I am not alone in this experience. Professor Juma was tremendously generous with his time and genuine with his advice. He inspired so many to become better listeners, better thinkers, better advocates for change. Kennedy School Dean Douglas W. Elmendorf said of Professor Juma [in an in an interview with the Harvard Crimson] “He was always looking for new ways to make the world better.” From where I stand, he did just that.

Over the years, Prof. Juma has shown genuine interest and care about who we were as an organization and gave guidance on what we could become. He welcomed AFPF into the international development community and dialogue with open arms, both globally and right here in Boston. Both personally and at AFPF, we owe him so very much and will work to honor his memory. We will miss his stories, his infectious laughter, and his profound wisdom.


Julia Pettengill, Executive Director

Announcing Scholarship Grant
to Som Chess Academy
Students of Som Chess Academy at the National Junior's Tournament in August of 2017.

We are happy to announce that AFPF has made a Scholarship Grant to Som Chess Academy, a Ugandan nonprofit that empowers underprivileged youth through chess training and education opportunities.

Som’s founder Robert Katende and former Som student Phiona Mutesi delivered the keynote address at last year’s AFPF Annual Dinner. Both shared their inspiring stories of growing up in the Kampala slums to becoming champions for education and youth in Uganda. Along with chess training, Som Academy offers school enrollment preparation for over 300 students across 17 chess centers. Som also offers tuition fees for formal schooling for over 60 students.

The grant from AFPF to Som Academy has provided tuition fees for 29 students, empowering these children to receive an education, become changemakers in their communities, and break the cycle of poverty. Like Robert and Phiona, these students exemplify what can happen when you invest in education and provide opportunity to thrive!
Update from a URDT Girls School Student

This past December, we shared with you the story of a URDT Girls School student named Shakira. Shakira grew up in a remote village in extreme poverty, but with the opportunity of education, she and her family are now thriving.

Since our last visit to Uganda, Shakira and her family farm have continued to grow! She has added cattle to her family farm, and with the income generated from the thriving business, she has purchased a car to help distribute her harvests and reach new markets. Shakira has continued construction of her family home and has even added on a garage for her new car. We can’t wait to see what Shakira does next!

Power Project Moves on to Next Phase

The ongoing project to improve power and internet for students and staff on the URDT campus has moved onto the next phase! In 2017, we shared the completion of the Audit & Identification phase and the Foundational & Safety phase. This spring, the Power Enhancement and Upgrade phase has begun to maximize grid connectivity and stabilize available power. The following phase will include alternative energy solutions for the URDT Girls School and Educational Programs.

With a grant from Schooner Foundation, AFPF is working with Support Green Communities (SGC), a company that brings high level consulting and best practices in power and telecommunications projects to developing countries to benefit the URDT campus. Like AFPF, SGC is committed to building local capacity through long-term partnerships, mentorship and vocational training. With SGC’s collaboration, over 100 people on the URDT campus have been trained in both technical and general electrical safety trainings.

2017: Another Year of Success for AFPF

Thanks to YOU, we’ve had another year of growth and success! We are incredibly grateful for the the steadfast support of our long-time donors, the work of our dedicated volunteers, and the enthusiasm of our new friends.

Because of you, AFPF is able to provide financial and strategic resources to community-initiated development projects in Africa. Together, we are having lasting impact toward a brighter future. Thank you, and let's keep the momentum going!

Donate Today!
Stay connected with AFPF updates. Follow us!
Copyright © 2018 African Food and Peace Foundation, All rights reserved.

Forward to a friend

unsubscribe from this list   


Email Marketing Powered by Mailchimp